Getting off the beaten track to visit the prettiest Cuban villages is a rewarding experience. It allows you to discover the island‘s hidden gems and experience its authentic culture. Here are a few suggestions.
Hidden Gold in Remedios
More of a small town than a village, Remedios is located in the central Cuban province of Villa Clara. Despite being almost 5 km from the coast, the town was once subject to regular pirate attacks. They were drawn by rumours of the town’s wealth. The town did indeed have quite a lot of gold and they wanted to hold onto it.
This altar is actually covered in gold. It was painted white to keep it hidden from the pirates that were prevalent in the area. It wasn’t discovered until some renovations that place in the 1940s.
The rest of the town has a lovely relaxed atmosphere that distinguishes it from towns of a similar size. You might well be the only foreigner in town!
One of the Prettiest Cuban Villages: Welcome to the White Town
Caibarién is located on Cuba’s north coast in the Villa Clara province. Many visitors pass through Caibarién, usually on their way to one of the nearby beachside resorts. These resorts are lovely, and yet don’t offer an authentic Cuban experience. You really should take the time to explore Caibarién as it’s one of the prettiest Cuban villages.
The village’s nickname is the White Town, due to the picture postcard white sandy beaches. You should stay in a casa particular while in town, since while there are a lot of hotels, they are not open for business. The town was popular with wealthy Cubans prior to the revolution.
This popularity disappeared almost overnight after 1959 as privately held wealth became a rarity. The formerly luxurious hotels are now but crumbling ruins, giving some streets in Caibarién a truly eerie beauty.
The Loveliest Mouth You’ll Ever See…
A short hop from Trinidad is the beachside village of La Boca. Boca means “the mouth” in Spanish, and it’s located at the ‘boca’ of the Guaurabo River. The area lacks the sandy white vistas of other Cuban beaches as it’s made up of tiny stones. Don’t let that put you off – you can easily rent a sunlounger from one of many obliging local businesses. La Boca is perhaps one of the most relaxed Cuban villages, and there’s really not much to do here other than relax.
There are a few restaurants but little in the way of nightlife. But the locals are among the friendliest you’ll encounter in Cuba. You can easily reach La Boca from Trinidad in a taxi. It’s worth spending a few days here for pure relaxation.
The Original Havana: Batabanó
Drive 40 minutes south of Havana and you’ll arrive at Batabanó. One of the most unassuming Cuban villages. Batabanó was reportedly once called San Cristóbal De La Habana. This was for several years in the 16th century before the larger settlement to the north claimed the name.
The village is a truly quite odd. Grimy communist era buildings sitting side by side brightly coloured Cuban shacks. It’s not a place that all visitors will appreciate. But there is something so wonderfully distinctive about the village. Even if you don’t hang around Batabanó, you should at least eat a meal here.
The seafood is sensational. Enjoy a reasonably priced lobster at one of the restaurants in the beachside area known as Surgidero De Batano. The village also serves as the main port for ferries. They leave from the mainland to one of the many islands in the archipelago just off the coast.
Seeing the prettiest Cuban villages means getting off the beaten track in Cuba but it’s well worth it!